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Nelson: Historical “Queen City” sees surge in housing starts, property value

The city of Nelson has transitioned from a rural lumber town to an arts and cultural haven, punctuated by health care and retail industries
The West Kootenay city of Nelson is home to just over 10,000, while the census agglomeration region accounts for 17,987 citizens – expected to hit over 28,000 citizens by 2040. Dubbed the “Queen City" for its saturation of heritage buildings, the region is nestled in the Selkirk Mountains along the West Arm of Kootenay Lake. The region’s Castlegar Airport is 35 minutes from the city and an hour's flight from Vancouver or Calgary. Once know primarily for its forestry and mining industries, Nelson’s has transitioned from a rural lumber town to a culturally-distinct city, punctuated by health care and retail industries. This shift has drawn in retirees and young families alike, leading to an increase of 92 per cent in year-over-over housing starts, as well as a BC Assessment value average residential increase of 9.3 per cent. The average residential home price in July 2017 was $404,059, up 6.8 per cent from the previous year. Home sales are down year-over-year due to limited inventory. The city’s rental vacancy rate is a reported 0 per cent as of October 2017, CMHC states.